Today’s Thoughts: In Evangelii Gaudium, Pope Francis writes, “I never tire of repeating those words of Benedict XVI which take us to the very heart of the Gospel: “Being a Christian is not the result of an ethical choice or a lofty idea, but the encounter with an event, a person, which gives life a new horizon and a decisive direction”.
Thanks solely to this encounter – or renewed encounter – with God’s love, which blossoms into an enriching friendship, we are liberated from our narrowness and self-absorption. We become fully human when we become more than human, when we let God bring us beyond ourselves in order to attain the fullest truth of our being.”
These words from Pope Francis and Pope Benedict today touch on the theme of our scriptures. Who are we? What are we about? Seems to be the question asked in our readings (Genesis 17: 3-9 and John 8: 51-59). Abram is to become the father of a host of nations; his name is even changed from Abram to Abraham. He is redefined as a person because of his personal encounter with God. Abraham is now a friend of God.
Jesus does not make himself out to be just anybody; Jesus is “I AM” and if we believe we have the gift of eternal life. It is a hard pill for the religious leadership to swallow. Jesus is not able to break through their stony heart with this personal encounter, in fact they pick up stones to do away with him. They cannot be liberated from their narrowness or self-absorption.
Perhaps our challenge today is to renew ourselves in light of our personal encounter with Christ, to have faith in the covenant, to believe in Jesus as “I AM,” to trust in our friendship with God. We are challenged today to let God bring us beyond ourselves to attain the fullest truth of who we are so that we can live this day a God’s joy filled friends who share our joy with everyone we meet!
Have a blessed Thursday everyone!
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Fr. Paul R. Fagan, C.P. "Preacher on the Run"
Just a few thoughts to help you on your journey through life...let me know from time to time what you think...